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Hey it is Heikki from EuroRC Storage Room! Seems like that long-awaited spring has finally find its way up the north and those massive snow piles are finally melting. For me, this is fun season.
During these days sun melts the surface of the snow during daytime and when the night comes over, it freezes again creating a wonderful if not magical forest-wide solid surface that is more than perfect for my crawlers. Nearby fields transform to endless solid plateaus that are excellent for bigger bashers. Why it can't be winter forever?
Today I wonder the differences between two wheel driven and four wheel driven RC cars. Join my ride especially if you are new to this hobby and want to learn more!
Traxxas Bandit 2WD buggy bites the dust. This is a great car for beginners.
What's 2WD for, Dad?
This may sound bit too basic for you I know. But what we see here at our Customer Service is that many things that are more than crystal clear for you, are not necessarily well known by the guy or gal next to you.
As simple as it is, 2WD means that two tires of your car transfer the power to the ground. You pull the trigger and two wheels rotate. 4WD means that all four wheels are rotating with full power and push your car fast forward! You may even see stuff like 8x8 or 6x4 especially with trucker style of RC stuff. Those should be read in a way that the first number tells the total amount of wheels and last number tells how many of them are connected to the drivetrain.
It would be easy to make a fast conclusion that 4WD is just better. Hands down, end of the case, nothing to see here!
Only if it would be that simple. There are many advantages that four-wheel driven car has, but as the life goes - if you win something, prepare to lose something.
Team Xray XB2 is the pinnacle of competition level 2WD Buggies
Keep it Simple, stu-
When comparing 4WD and 2WD, one thing rises above all the others - 2WD is much more simple in design than four wheel driven. The motor is usually coupled directly to the differential - with easy access gear cover - and power goes straight to the tires. There is no shaft or belt or set of gears of any kind that are required to transfer the power to front wheels.
There is only one differential in 2WD while 4WD cars have easily three of them. When blasting with two wheel driven car, there is so much less wrenching and repair. Simple design means also that you are way much faster back in the track than with a four wheeler thanks to the hobby friendly basic layout without any gimmicks.
Some of the most iconic 2WD Beetles from our RC Museum Collections
Two wheel driven truck can - theoretically - turn better as there is no front driveshafts limiting the travel. Absence of front driveshafts is again one thing less that is prone to break and this is very friendly for your wallet.
It is true that driving a 2WD may be a bit challenging for a beginner - especially if there is a huge brushless powered motor and driver is yet to learn how to match the speed with the situation. Anyhow I do not see this a bad thing only as it will teach the driver to handle their car better. Talk about learning curve!
One of the best things for me when going 2WD is the Fun Factor. 2WD can be pushed in to a long sweet slides where it is just in the edge of losing the grip. Looks so good and is very fun! Four wheel driven car just takes the curve and continues with a straight face like nothing. I want my RC to be fun!
Academy of Professionals
Okay so 2WD is simplier and may be more fun and blabla. Why to go with four wheel driven then huh? Well, as you may imagine the traction should be much better with four wheeler. Is true. 4WD trucks are much better in handling and they really grip to the track tight especially when the setup is done right.
Four wheel driven truck accelerates much faster than the 2WD and does not spin around so easily. Rear Wheel driven truck can be a real demon to drive especially if the surface is slippery or icy or if tire selection is wrong. We call this RC Ballet and while it may be beautiful to watch it is not good for lap times.
Four Wheel powered are also much more easy to control in the jumps as you can balance the car mid-air. 2WD just lands somewhere and usually rear first as it tends to be more heavy. One could say that four wheeler has a better over all balance - thanks to more complex layout and better grip to the surface.
Not-so-nice fact is that 4WD cars have a lot of parts. Way much more than 2WD has. This means unfortunately that there is more areas to wrench and keep in nice condition. End of the day 4WD becomes more expensive to race.
I'll be just racing my Blitz
Simple guy as I am - I love my ancient 2WD truck of HPI Blitz. Unfortuantely it is not in production anymore but often overlooked Jumpshot SC gets pretty close.
I think that the little uncertainty in its behavior adds a lot in to Fun Factor side of driving. All my four wheelers are crawlers but with them I get my fun out of something else. With them I appreciate the accuracy. I don't want them to do any fancy tricks when side climbing on the cliffside!
When you are looking for something fun this season, keep those rear wheel driven cars in your mind - they have more to give than their public image has. No matter what I am gonna have a lot of not-too-serious fun with my Blitz this season again - or should I donate it to where it belongs - our RC museum?
BTW.. I would LOVE to see your RC cars, please send photos! No matter if they are one, two or twelve wheelers. All sizes and types welcome! Send mail to [email protected] and keep the good stuff rolling in!
Make Love Not War and Thanks for Reading
Heikki / EuroRC
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